With the lack of the light and the overall November blues atmosphere I seem to be reluctant to take photos of the things I’m baking these days. To make these pictures I had to use a lamp… Each year November seems to catch me off-guard, such a hard month. December somehow passes much easier as half of it at least is taken over by all the New Year and Christmas preparations (for those who do get involved). And then the days grow longer. But as for now, we are still a month away from that!
So why not dream about sun with this bright yellow cake (made extra-yellow thanks to the lamp 🙂 the recipe for which comes from the sunny Bulgaria. This country is famous for its peaches (as well as roses – and yogurt – and brine cheese…) so no surprise these guys know how to use them. The peaches I used were from Greece though 🙂 After baking with apples for so many months in a row I was really relieved to bake with something else!
1 year ago – Heritage Days in Avignon
2 years ago – Petroskoi or Petrozavodsk, Capital of Karelian Republic
3 years ago – Multigrain Bread and the Best View
4 years ago – Ramble On
5 years ago – 1 Idea for 2 Delicious Dinners
Sladkish s Praskovi or Bulgarian Peach Cake translated and adapted from www.zajenata.bg will make a big white cake with sunny peaches on top.
- 1 kg peaches (or other fruit), sliced – I used almost an entire can of (Greek) peaches in syrup, drained
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup (200 ml) sugar
- 1 tea cup sour milk or smetana – I used tvorog (5 % cottage cheese) + smetana (15% sour cream) + kefir
- 2 cups all-purpose flour – I also added some vanilla extract
- ½ package baking powder – measured out something like 2 tsp
- 100 ml vegetable oil – I used sunflower
- a pinch of salt
- powdered sugar, for decorating the top – skipped that
Beat the eggs with sugar, add smetana or sour milk, oil and salt. Then add in the flower sifted with the baking powder, so that you get a thick smooth mixture.
Grease and flour your baking dish and preheat the oven to 180 °С.
Pour the batter into the baking dish and bake for about 5 minutes. Then take the dish out of the oven and arrange the peach slices on top of the par-baked batter. Return to the oven for 30 minutes more. When the cake is ready, cool it and decorate it with powdered sugar.
Remarks: Although I par-baked the cake for more than 5 minutes, I also needed more time for it to be ready during the final baking. I guess the baking pan was a bit small for this cake. So I would add more peaches or bake the cake in a larger pan. Be sure to drain your peaches thoroughly if you’re using canned fruit like me.
Results: This cake can easily be used as a birthday / gift cake. It looks nice (even though it sunk in the middle a bit) and it keeps its shape. But as soon as you start cutting it, the peach slices inevitably fall apart 🙂
My second recipe that I baked the same day comes from a probably less sunny country, the Czech Republic. I have this idee fixe each time I want to bake something from the comfort food category – and that is jam envelopes, konvertiki s povidlom (pryaniki or Russian gingerbread belong to this category as well). This recipe comes nearly close to the thing I wanted so much.
Grandma’s Kolache or Czech Envelopes with Jam adapted from www.mrbreakfast.com will make 20 or so soft buns filled with your favourite jam. Follow the link to see the entire recipe. Kolache derives from the Old Slavonic kolo which means circle or wheel, and the Russian and East European bread kalach is actually round (more or less – depending on its local variation).
My changes and remarks:
I used butter instead of shortening, added less salt and vanilla extract, but had to put in more flour. As for the filling I chose homemade apple puree and just a few of the buns had apple jam inside.
I made less kolache – only 20 instead of the suggested 24.
I baked my kolache a bit longer than stated in the recipe. The jam started flowing out of the buns when I moved them to the upper shelf in the oven for several minutes. So the next batch I baked only on the middle rack and they rose better. On this photo the top kolache is with the apple jam (I used mostly the fruit part) and the other two are with the apple puree:
Result: These very soft mini-pies will remind you of your childhood years… even if you have never tasted jam envelopes before 🙂